The bare essentials of clubfitting and clubbuilding. Colorado AVID Golfer did a great article on clubfitting and how and why it works for every golfer. But you should know that every clubfitting organization is different in their approach. So what are the bare essentials that will help you play better golf and enjoy the game even more?
Experienced Fitters. PJ Garber has been in the golf industry for 40 years and has been fitting with our fitting system for nearly 20 years. I have been fitting for 20 years and we both have been building clubs for twenty years. So when a golfer says, “Well, my swing is pretty unique,” we just smile and say, trust me we have seen them all. The key for us is that not only have we seen a lot of golf swings and equipment, we are continually learning new techniques and adapting them to our fitting system. We have fit golfers from 6 years old to 95 years old, men, women, juniors, swing speeds from 45 to 145 mph. That gives us a wide range of experience.
A Repeatable Approach: A good fitter has a defined process that takes them from a player interview through equipment analysis to gathering launch monitor data and making very specific recommendations to try during the fitting. Our BGF (Better Golf…Faster) Fitting System makes specific club length, shaft weight, shaft flex, swing weight and shaft profile recommendations based upon analysis of over 12,000 golfers we have fit. Of course this is a starting point but it is more effective than just pulling a shaft and head off the wall that your fitter THINKS might work.
Unbiased Options: A good fitting allows you to try multiple heads with multiple shaft options, not just options from one or two vendors. We have literally over 100 heads and 250 shafts to use in our fittings. That’s hundreds of thousands of combinations. The beauty is that we ask our customer to select 3 to 4 head options that they have been considering, and then we select 3 to 4 shaft options that should work. We then proceed to determine, with the customer’s input and launch monitor data, which club and head combination gives the best fitting results in terms of distance, accuracy and consistency. We have absolutely no incentive to sell one manufacturer over another.
Advanced Technology: If a clubfitter is not taking advantage of the latest launch monitor technology (TrackMan, FlightScope, Foresight) you are missing out on optimizing your performance. While all launch monitors are not created equal, the technology should provide both launch data (club speed, ball speed, smash factor, spin rate, launch angle) and club head delivery (swing path, attack angle, face to path). With this data, a good clubfitter can not only optimize your equipment performance but give you some ideas why your swing may need a tweak or two.
Buy Versus Re-Shaft: There is no reason to purchase new equipment if the only thing wrong is the shaft (length, weight, flex, profile). In fact, 40-50% of our business is putting the right shaft in our customer’s clubs and making them perform better.
Custom Build to Exact Specifications: It is one thing to be custom fit but quite another to then have those clubs built by a major manufacturer to very detailed tolerances. The reason companies like PXG, Callaway, TaylorMade, Tour Edge, Miura, EPON, and others use custom clubbuilders like D’Lance Golf Performance Center is because they know that we build to very tight tolerances that cannot be achieved in mass production or even in their custom build shops. While not every custom clubfitter does custom clubbuilding the way we do, things like frequency matching, spine alignment of shafts, swing weight matching are not done by the major manufacturers. And yes, it does make a HUGE difference in performance.
Performance Guarantee: If you go through and clubfitting and have clubs built to your exact specifications, the clubfitter should stand behind their promise to improve your performance. A good fitting can take 2-3 hours and multiple head/shaft combinations. We should be able to get it right! If not, come back and we will make it right.
So there you have it. Experience, Repeatable Approach, Unbiased Options, Advanced Technology, Buy versus Re-Shaft, Custom Build to Exact Specifications and a solid Performance Guarantee. Those are the bare essentials you should look for in a clubfitter and clubbuilder.